February 28, 2015

WINNING THE WAR ON PUBLIC EDUCATION UNIONS:

Who really gets tested by state exams (Lynn Baker,  February 27, 2015, Washington Post)

I entered my classroom on test day, armed with a positive attitude and a calm smile. Neither guaranteed test success or reflected my true feelings. Both made me feel better.

Preparation for the Virginia Standards of Learning tests had begun in September. Third grade was an especially demanding year, since it was the first time the children had been tested. Merely practicing for the test wasn't enough. We practiced for the practice for the practice test. Online testing meant that a large part of the computer lab had been transformed from a time of creative discovery into endless drills. The counselor even directed a skit that was full of test tips: If you feel anxious, breathe deeply and slowly count to 10. Remember to go to bed early the night before the test. Eat a healthy breakfast on the morning of the test. Our efforts couldn't guarantee higher test scores, but they made us feel better.

These tests were high stakes for the classroom teachers and for the school but not for the 8-year-olds.

Posted by at February 28, 2015 7:13 AM
  

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